I wanted to do a short Trope Time today because this trope family amuses me and I wanted to focus on something a bit more positive and fun.
People love to play with cute and dangerous. They make dangerous things cute. They make cute things dangerous. They try to hide dangerous things behind a cute name, or vice versa. The intersection between dangerous and cute happens a lot, yet it seems like every time, cute wins out. What is our fascination with this thing called “cute”?
It can start innocently enough. Some person just comes along, finds and “tames” this dangerous thing and decides that they aren’t dangerous at all. They’re cute and loveable, and perfectly capable of roaming the castle when really they shouldn’t be in the castle at all and should be far away from other students, Hagrid.
So that unhinged person ends up naming this dangerous, foul beast something like “Fluffy” or “Twinkle” or “Kitten” and they talk to the creature as if it is a bouncing human baby. They never understand why everyone is weirded out by this fact. Or why everyone is running away from their totally not-at-all dangerous creature.
Or it can go the opposite way. The most huggable of creatures ends up being called by the most dangerous of names. That sweet puppy that just wants to lick you all over is now Killer. Or the baby nicknamed for the doom they bring to their diapers.
Things become dangerous when dangerous things masquerade as cute things. Or, get trapped in the body of cute things. Especially prominent with young children being the outer skin for dark and evil.
Things swing back around to normal again, though, when that cute, fluffy little ball of adorable ends up being the most dangerous thing in the room. Or, normal for fantasy, I suppose. They lure you in with their cuteness and rip out your throat with teeth they aren’t even supposed to have! Or they suck out your heart through their eyes.
That may actually just be cats, further research is needed.
In the mindset of positivity:
What are your favourite examples of these tropes?
Which of these applications of cute are your favourite?
Are there any cute tropes I missed that you want to talk about?